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March 20, 2017 05:00 PM

Sanford Pentagon Prepares For Elite Eight

It is shaping up to be another exciting week for basketball fans.  Teams are beginning to arrive in Sioux Falls for the NCAA Division II Elite Eight.  Fairmont State players posted a picture on social media just minutes after their plane touched down at the airport.  Practice does not begin until Tuesday at the Sanford Pentagon, but that does not mean its basketball courts are empty. 

"It's a big puzzle, trying to put all the pieces together and make it a perfect fit," Sioux Falls Sports Authority Executive Director Bryan Miller  said.

Before the sneakers hit the floor, crews are setting up tables for a banquet for the visiting teams. 

"And then tearing it all down and getting it ready for practice tomorrow morning," Miller said.

Last year, the facility hosted The NCAA Division II Women's Elite Eight.  This year's games with the men's teams are more big events for the Sanford Pentagon.

"Anytime we can welcome teams from around the nation.  From New York to Florida to California, we're excited about having that opportunity and kind of showcasing the city," Miller said.

"I still smile every time I see the Pentagon on TV.  I love seeing our floor, our court, our facility showcased on the networks," Executive Director for the Sanford Pentagon Jesse Smith said.

A lot of work happens behind the scenes to make the Elite Eight happen.  As Miller points out, getting ready for these games is not a one-person job; it is really a team effort. 

"Trying to work with everybody and again, putting those puzzle pieces together to make a beautiful picture," Miller said.

The Elite Eight games begin on Wednesday and carry on through Saturday.  Tickets are still available.  The cost is $36 for all-session tickets and $15 for single session.

You can purchase those at the Sanford Pentagon's box office or on www.ticketmaster.com.  
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